As many of you will know from my previous blogpost (which features also features a simple guide) COST is a Brussels-based intergovernmental network for Cooperation in Science and Technology. It was announced last week that it will receive an extra €10 million from the European Commission.
The Commission had so far withheld part of Cost’s funding for Framework 7. In 2010, the FP7 mid-term evaluation made several criticisms about Cost’s complex governance structure. But the evaluators also said the programme fulfilled its mission nevertheless and should receive “the additional €40m reserved in Framework 7 for Cost”.
In April 2011, the Commission decided to release only €30m for Cost to begin with. In June 2011, Cost launched a revamped strategy aiming in particular to increase efficiency and better demonstrate impact (see RE 10 Nov 11 via link below). The €10m top-up now brings Cost’s overall budget to the planned €250m for 2007-13.
I have just been made aware that the European Commission has launched a call for expressions of interest for a new initiative, the “Voice of the Researchers”. The aim is to appoint 20 researchers to advise the Commission on a range of issues. This is a key opportunity to get your views heard in Europe and help shape EU policy which will then influence funding calls for proposals.
The call for expressions of interest is targeted at researchers of all ages, nationalities and disciplines and it is hoped that 20 candidates will be appointed to advise on policy issues such as:
- Defining the researchers’ role and contribution to global societal challenges;
- Improving the career prospects and working conditions of researchers in Europe;
- Strengthening the social prestige and recognition of researchers; and
- Developing new, interactive communication channels between researchers and the Commission.
Selected candidates will be invited to a brainstorming session on 23 April 2012. This is an excellent opportunity for researchers to provide input into future policy. To apply you have to answer 4 questions with no more than a 150 word answer for each in an online expression of interest , but the deadline is Thursday (15th March) so be quick!
SMEs can sometimes be nervous of getting involved in FP7 projects because of the Intellectual Property Rights (IPR). The European Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Helpdesk has published new guidance intended to give SMEs an overview of how IP should be managed within FP7. The guide addresses issues faced by participants at the proposal stage, during negotiation and implementation, and upon completion of the project. It also contains a glossary and a list of links to useful resources. The guide can be used in conjunction with the three more detailed guides addressing IP issues at different stages of FP7 projects which were published at the end of 2011.
The EU Energy Focus team have a wide range of fantastic free services that can help with your submission for May.
Pre-proposal check service – The Commission pre-proposal check service is open until 30th March. This allows you to submit a summary of your proposal to check that your proposal idea is in principle eligible for Intelligent Energy Europe (IEE) funding. Information on how to access the service can be found at the following website. You are encouraged you to submit your proposal ideas to the EU Energy Focus team for initial review so that they can be refined as much as possible to make the most of the Commission service.
Online support – Online support sessions will take place as and when required before the deadline. The online support sessions will provide you with a comprehensive and interactive presentation on key aspects of the proposal preparation and submission process. The feedback from those that have taken part in the sessions previously has been very positive and it only takes a small amount of time away from your proposal preparation work and it should save you time in the long run. The team will be referring to the material from these sessions when they undertake the proposal review process so it is recommended that you take part in the sessions in order to understand the messages fully. They will notify us of dates soon.
Proposal clinics – The team will be holding proposal clinics (one to one meetings of 1 hour with a member of the EU Energy Focus team to discuss your proposal) on the following dates:
- Monday 26th March – Manchester
- Wednesday 28th March – London
Please register your interest in attending a clinic session by sending a proposal summary to email@example.com and indicating which date you would be available to attend a clinic. IEE will then allocate the sessions and inform you of the time for your meeting. Please let them know if you would like to attend a clinic session but are unable to attend on these dates in these locations as they will try to accommodate you on alternative dates or at other locations if this can be arranged.
Proposal review – they will be offering a proposal review service between Monday 16th April and the proposal deadline. Please email the team to let them know if you anticipate that you would like them to review your proposal so that they can keep a note of how many proposals to expect.
The EU and China have agreed to step up their science cooperation at their 14th bilateral summit, held in Beijing on 14 February. Both sides agreed to strengthen cooperation under their Science and Technology Cooperation Agreement, and to enhance the exchange of young researchers, leaders wrote in statement. In addition, the EU and China said they will boost their cooperation in energy research, and will continue their collaboration on the satellite navigation system Galileo and space technology.
The European Science Foundation invites applications for grants to attend the European Forum for Energy Research’s second European energy conference. The conference will be held from 17 to 20 April 2012 in Maastricht, the Netherlands. funding covers the conference fee for doctoral students. This is a fantastic networking opportunity, so if you are eligible then do apply!
FI-WARE is the core platform of the future internet, invites proposals through the Directorate-General for Information Society and Media, for its open call for additional partners.The FI-WARE project has reserved a portion of the project budget to fund specific tasks to be carried out by new beneficiaries which will join the consortium after start of the project. These later-joining beneficiaries are selected by means of a series of competitive Open Calls.Topics for this call are: middleware for efficient and QoS/security-aware invocation of services and exchange of messages; business models and business elements definition and simulation. The budget for this call is €2 million, of which €1.25m is allocated to middleware proposals and €750,000 to BM and BE proposals. Check out further details on the FI-Ware call webpage. The deadline for submissions is the 25th April 2012.
I’m delighted to announce that the brilliant Dr Martin Pickard of the company Grantcraft will be returning to Bournemouth in February. Martin has 25 years of winning EU funding and an excellent track record in helping academics write successful proposals.
EU Funding & Grant Writing:With FP7 drafts being released already, I’ve invited Martin to host a one day workshop on EU funding and grant writing, as it is very different from UK funders. I organised this session last year and the feedback we received from staff who attended was excellent“I must say it’s a great workshop, which provides us a number of important points we should pay attention to while drafting our proposals.”. This will take place in K103 (Kimmeridge House, Talbot Campus) on February 15th and all refreshments and lunch will be included. Attending this session will also enable you to access Martin’s excellent reviewing skills for your submission until September, which is fantastic.
Marie Curie Fellowships: These grants are absolutely the best way to kick start your EU career; they have a fantastic success rate for applications (40%) and you only need one other EU partner. You can either apply to have an academic come to the university from Europe or you can go to another European country as part of the fellowship scheme. BU has had success with Marie Curie grants before and Martin is an absolute expert in writing these types of grant. This session will be dedicated to selecting the right grant for you and how to write a fantastic proposal. This will take place in EB203(Exec Business Centre, Lansdowne Campus) on February 16th and all refreshments and lunch will be included. Attending this session will also enable you to access Martin’s excellent reviewing skills for your submission until the official deadline in September.
Booking for either day is compulsory as numbers are limited and each day will run 9:30-5 and will include lunch and refreshments. Please register for the event here stating which session you would like to attend (you may attend both if you wish), and stating any dietary requirements and any special arrangements you may require for attending.
Several UK research funders—including research councils, learned societies and charities—have agreed on principles to support researchers going abroad. The organisations have committed to several principles, including “ensuring that researchers who have trained or worked in the UK have access to the information they may require to enable their continuing involvement with the UK research base”.
Another is promoting the Euraxess UK website as a key information portal. The website, providing information and advice for UK research staff, is funded by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and managed by the British Council “We are committed to working in partnership with the other funders of academic fellowships to ensure researchers moving in and out of the UK research base have the support they need to make informed decisions,” said Rick Rylance, chairman of RCUK, in a statement.
Sexual Transmission of HIV within Migrant Groups: The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) has published a call for tenders regarding the sexual transmission of HIV within migrant groups and implications for effective interventions.The overall scope and objective of this call for tender is to undertake a systematic literature review complemented with a short survey to Member States, on the subject of sexual transmission of HIV in the EU/EEA in populations of migrants from countries with generalised HIV epidemics. Based on the data gathered, implications and recommendations for HIV prevention strategies and programmes within the EU/EEA should be discussed. The deadline for submitting tenders is 21 February.
Entrepreneurship Education: The European Commission has launched a call for proposals for entrepreneurship education. This call aims to support the implementation of principle 1 of the Small Business Act and the Oslo Agenda for Entrepreneurship Education in Europe. The Small Business Act recommends stimulating innovative and entrepreneurial mindsets among young people by introducing entrepreneurship as a key competence in school curricula and ensuring that the importance of entrepreneurship is correctly reflected in teacher training. Consequently, the objective of this call is to promote projects with a high added value at European level in education for entrepreneurship. Actions will target teachers and young people in primary, secondary and tertiary education. Applications must be sent to the Commission no later than 16 April 2012.
Systematic Reviews of Environmental Determinants of Infectious Diseases: The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control has published a call for tenders for the provision of systematic reviews of environmental determinants of infectious diseases. The aim is to systematically review the evidence for environmental determinants of infectious diseases both on an ecologic as well as an individual level. The deadline for submitting tenders is 6 March 2012.
Attribution of Social Policies on the Infectious Disease Burden: The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control has published a call for tenders for the attribution of social policies on the infectious disease burden. The objective of this study is to disentangle the different contributions of government policies on the infectious disease burden in society. Specifically, the goal is to identify aetiologic pathways of socio-economic inequalities and their impact on infectious diseases. Ultimately the aim is to inform policymakers about interventions that have a direct impact on infectious diseases. The deadline for submitting tenders is 6 March 2012.
The European Commission’s Work Programme for 2012 has been adopted! This document outlines political priorities and actions to be delivered. The 2012 programme is focussed on fostering a sustainable and job-rich economic recovery, reflecting the Europe 2020 strategy and its flagship initiatives and is built on three overarching priorities:
- Building a Europe of stability and responsibility;
- Building a Union of growth and solidarity; and
- Giving the EU an effective voice in the wider world.
The European Commission has adopted the ‘Energy Roadmap 2050’ which is intended to be the basis for developing a long-term EU framework for energy. If you’re interested in applying for calls under the FP7 Energy theme, then you should familiarise yourself with the overarching principles to strengthen your application.
The Energy Roadmap 2050 sets out the challenges posed by delivering the EU’s decarbonisation objective, while at the same time ensuring security of energy supply and competitiveness, by analysing a set of scenarios to describe the consequences of a carbon free energy system and the resulting necessary policy framework. Key points from the Roadmap include:
- Decarbonisation of the energy system is technically and economically feasible
- Energy efficiency and renewable energy are critical
- Early investments cost less
- Contain the increase of prices
- Economies of scale are needed
If you’re thinking of applying for Energy FP7, read the Energy Roadmap 2050 Communication and FAQs on the Roadmap.
The European Commission has launched a call for expressions of interest from both user and industry representatives to form a new eHealth Stakeholder group for 2012.
The group will provide a platform for the development of legislation or policy related to eHealth and will have two main objectives:
•provide input into design and implementation of eHealth policy activities, in particular the Digital Agenda for Europe on eHealth, and the implementation of the eHealth Action Plan; and
•deliver independent, sound and transparent advice, drawing on their knowledge and research.
The deadline for applications of interest is 30 January 2012, and those appointed will be expected be an active member of the group for three years.
DG Justice has a new and improved websitewhich now has two particularly useful new pages: one containing an oversight of its 6 funding programmes, and one summarising open calls for grant proposals.
There are also separate web pages giving details of each of the funding programmes, including Daphne III, the Civil Justice Programme, the Criminal Justice Programme and the Fundamental Rights and Citizenship Programme. Currently open calls with forthcoming deadlines are:
Linked to Horizon 2020 changes, the 6 Programmes within DG Justice will be condensed to just two:
- Justice Programme: concerned with judicial co-operation in civil and criminal matters (€472m budget)
- Rights & Citizenship Programme concerned with the development of an area of freedom, security and justice, by promoting and supporting the effective implementation of a Europe of rights (€439m budget)
To complement this, DG Home Affairs are replacing their current schemes with an Asylum & Migration Fund (worth €3.9b) and a Internal Security Fund (worth €4.65b).
DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion are launching a Programme for Social Change and Innovation . This contains three Programmes: Programme for Employment and Social Solidarity (worth €574m), European Employment Services (worth €143.7m) and European Progress Microfinance Facility (worth €191.6m).
Why not take a few minutes to have a peek…?
The Executive Agency for Health and Consumers (EAHC) has issued calls for proposals, based upon the Directorate for Public Health and Consumers (DG Sanco) Work Programme for 2012. This Programme supports the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing, and the calls cover a wide area of public health issues. The deadline for these proposals is 09.03.12. Funds are available for projects, conferences, operating grants and joint actions, available through calls under the following headings:
- 3.1.1. Protect citizens against health threats – Develop risk management capacity and procedures, improve preparedness and planning for health emergencies;
- 3.1.2. Protect citizens against health threats – Develop strategies and mechanisms for preventing, exchanging information on and responding to health threats from communicable and non-communicable diseases and health threats from physical, chemical or biological sources, including deliberate release acts;
- 3.1.3. Improve citizens’ safety – Scientific advice;
- 3.1.4. Improve citizens’ safety – Safety and quality of organs and substances of human origin, blood, and blood derivatives;
- 3.2.1. Increasing healthy life years and promoting healthy ageing;
- 3.2.2. Identifying the causes of, addressing and reducing health inequalities within and between Member States in order to contribute to prosperity and cohesion; supporting co-operation on issues of cross-border care and patient and health professional mobility;
- 3.2.3. Addressing health determinants to promote and improve physical and mental health and taking action on key factors such as nutrition and physical activity, and on addiction-related determinants such as tobacco and alcohol;
- 3.2.4. Prevention of major and rare diseases;
- 3.3.1. European Health Information System;
- 3.3.2. Dissemination, analysis and application of health information; provision of information to citizens, stakeholders and policy makers; and
- 3.3.3. Analysis and reporting.
Take a look at the DG Sanco web page for more information on the calls.
There is also an Information Day in Brussels on 11.01.12 where you will be offered the opportunity to clarify queries concerning the administrative procedure and the technical contents of the call, as well as network with others in the same field. The deadline for registration for this event is 09.01.12 January 2012 but don’t worry if you can’t make it as the Infoday will also be web-streamed, and the link to this will be available on the EAHC website in advance.
Our contact in Brussels, UKRO has updated its briefing note on the European energy policy and research funding landscape. The briefing will be useful to any of you researching in the area of energy as it gives key insights into future policy, funding opportunities and provides detail on ways of engaging with key European players.
briefing covers the European Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET-Plan) and related initiatives which include the European Industry Initiatives (EIIs), the Joint research Programmes (JPs) of the European Energy Research Alliance (EERA) and the European Universities Association European Platform of Universities Engaged in Energy Research (EPUE). It also includes updated Questions and Answers, including how they relate to FP7 and Horizon 2020, and links to further sources of information and newsletters.
You can read the notes from the meeting on the UKRO webpages.
Just a reminder to you all about our fantastic two EU funding opportunities from BU which have already had an overwhelming response.
The BU EU Academic Development Scheme (EUADS) is for all newbie’s in EU research, comprising of an amazing training and mentorship programme and a personal budget to help you create a proposal. The deadline for this scheme is 13.01.12
The BU EU Networking Fund (EUNF) is for anyone who wants to travel to network with potential partners. There isn’t a deadline for this but the funds are limited so be quick and don’t miss out!
More details on both schemes as well as application forms can be found in my previous blogpost.
How long do you spend writing funding proposals and how does this compare elsewhere in Europe? According to a recent analysis by the Swedish National Agency for Higher Education, Swedish researchers spend 10% of their research time applying for funding. Based on data from 2009, lecturers spend 40 per cent of their time on research and of this, 10% is spent applying for external funds, which makes up roughly half of the research funding at Sweden’s universities.